As customer demand increases, organisations are having to provide support across the globe and around the clock to their customers. Welcome to the era of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and chat bots. As well as combating the issue of ‘globalisation’, using chat bots as a first line for customer contact also enables agents to focus on more complex issues. So, how can an operation ensure that a chat bot integrates seamlessly as part of a customer engagement strategy, understanding the emotional frame of mind of a customer, and reducing customer effort? Rew Golding, Head of Channels and Partners at Rant & Rave, and Melissa Frost, Lead Brand and Communications Consultant at Premier CX, collaborate to share their top 3 ideas.
1. The language barrier
Over the last 20 years, a lot has changed in the world of chat bots. Where previously they may have pulled in a list of ‘out of context’, predetermined responses based on certain key words, chat bots are now starting to ‘think’ and ‘learn’ from their interactions. Facebook amongst others have opened their doors to developers to help build effective and helpful chat bots through their messenger platform. Holding simple, natural language conversations that resonate with a brands’ target audience will spell success for chat bots. If a customer realises that they’re not speaking to a live agent then your chat bot has failed. Unfortunately, this is also likely to encourage a negative response from the user as they might feel like they have been hoodwinked, especially if your bots have human names! Aim for the ‘omni-channel’ customer experience, using the same language across all your customer touch points, from your website, to your videos, letters, and even your emails. This will help improve understanding, making your customers feel like they are at least in the right place.
2. Acting like a cry baby!
As the use of bots grows, colloquial language and emotion will have a crucial part to play in their success. If a customer has a complaint, they need to feel that the agent or chat bot dealing with this feels empathy for their plight. Failure to acknowledge this could lead to an exacerbated service problem and evoke further displeasure in a customer. Simple apologies can go a long way, but it might be worth engaging an agent notification based on certain complaint terminology. Agents and bots must continue the conversation through the same chat thread, and handovers should be completely continuous to reduce the customer effort.
3. Learn through customer feedback
The only way that you and your chat bots will learn is through customer feedback. There’s no time like the present, so use your livechat box or thread to display a feedback option. Alternatively, if you have an email address for your customer, you could request feedback upon conclusion of the chat. You’ll never stop learning from your customers, so continue to garner brand loyalty by giving them a voice to proactively communicate with you. The ultimate goal here is to turn a potentially negative customer into a lifetime advocate of your brand or business.